Pluralsight Leadership Team Gears up for Surging Growth with Appointment of Former Skullcandy VP Brett Barlow as New CMO
Barlow Brings 17 Years of Marketing, Digital and P.R. Experience, Including Time at Skullcandy, HP and Omniture (Adobe)
Barlow Managed the Skullcandy Brand During a Five-Year Span that Saw Revenue Boom From $20M to $300M, Leading to the Company's 2011 IPO
SALT LAKE CITY – In anticipation of continued growth in revenue and market share, online video training company Pluralsight announced today the hire of former Skullcandy executive Brett Barlow as its new chief marketing officer. Barlow's appointment bookends a series of blue-chip hires -- including the arrivals earlier this year of chief financial officer Greg Woodward, from Huntsman Gay Global Capital, and vice president of content acquisitions Chad Utley, from MarketStar -- who will help the company navigate its steadily rising trajectory in the online education industry.
As Skullcandy's vice president of interactive marketing and e-commerce, Barlow steered the leading audio brand's image during its leap from $20 million to $300 million in revenue, which culminated in the company's 2011 IPO. Pluralsight CEO Aaron Skonnard expects to lean on Barlow's unique experience as Pluralsight plots a similar course.
"I am thrilled by Brett's arrival and the possibilities he brings to our company," Skonnard said. "Adding him to our top-flight leadership team was paramount to our maturity as a company. We needed executives with a proven track record of helping companies accelerate through the turns of major revenue growth."
Barlow, Pluralsight's inaugural CMO, brings more than 17 years of experience in marketing, advertising, digital and public relations, including leadership roles at HP and Omniture (Adobe). Skonnard believes that attracting an executive of Barlow's caliber to the education industry is proof positive that Pluralsight's business model -- which provides high-quality professional content to paying subscribers - - is sustainable, scalable and profitable.
"I'm humbled to be joining such a talented executive team and this exciting company at such an important phase of the business," Barlow said. "It's unique to find so much untapped growth remaining at an organization that has already grown so much. This is an operation that has consistently produced triple-digit growth largely by word-of-mouth, so there is no end to what the introduction of an aggressive marketing engine can do."
Founded originally as a classroom-based training company, Pluralsight made a major pivot when it moved its training business completely online in 2008. It now offers more than 500 courses to nearly 300,000 users across more than 100 different countries. With a seasoned executive team, and the recent infusion of $27.5 million in funding from Insight Venture Partners, Pluralsight is quickly becoming the premiere training resource for Web and IT professionals.
"Up to this point, the purely organic growth of Pluralsight's enterprise customer base has been more than enough to keep us busy," said Jeff Ross, Pluralsight vice president of sales. "With Brett on board, we have the resources for a full-fledged enterprise marketing strategy, which effectively erases any ceiling we may have had before."
Pluralsight's game-changing model was recently illustrated in the announcement that Scott Allen, one of its course authors, had become online education's first million-dollar teacher. Since 2008, Scott has personally earned more than $1.8 million in teaching fees and royalties for his courses. He's also on track to make $1 million in 2013 alone from his tremendously popular lessons C#, jQuery and CSS. His success provides a promising outlook not only for Pluralsight but for the modern educator landscape, as well.